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You've Almost Got the Job! Now Who Do You Call?

posted on: 2013-02-05

Congratulations! You've just been offered your perfect dream job pending a reference check, and your employer asks you for a list of references. Now what?

Making References Available

Most, if not all hospitality and tourism employers will ask for references regarding your character, your past job performance, or both. It's okay to say on your resume 'references available upon request,' but don't make the mistake of making this a general statement.

If you're not comfortable providing references on the resume itself, make sure you have a backup list to provide when asked. If you have a list at the ready when an interviewer asks, you will look both prepared and professional, qualities that will always serve you well in an interview, regardless of the position you are applying for.

It's also in your best interest to speak to the people you would like to vouch for you before going on any interviews. It's not good for the references you choose to be blindsided by a phone call asking about you when you haven't even told them about the position you're interviewing for, or asked their permission to use them as a reference. Be as courteous as you can.

Let your references know what you're applying for and some of the traits you would like them to mention about you.

So Who Do you Ask?

Picking three or four good quality references is all that you need.

Asking immediate family members to be a reference for you is never a good idea. If you're interviewing for an airline stewardess job, you don't want your mother telling a representative from a prospective airline that, as far as she knows, you're terrified to fly. If you told your last boss what he could do with his job before you quit and stormed out, chances are he will not give you a glowing reference.

Definitely include a boss that you got along with well or another colleague that could comment knowledgeably on the role you worked in. The most recent would be your best bet. Choosing someone who you worked with five years ago may not remember you unless you've kept in contact with that person.

You'll also want to pick someone who has known you well outside of work, such as someone who you have been volunteering with in the community, or someone from your church or other community group or club that you belong to that has known you for some time and can comment on your character.

Thank The People You Ask

Once you've chosen your list be sure to thank them for being a reference for you. You should do this whether or not you get the job and/or whether or not you receive feedback from the person who interviewed you.

Great references may be the deciding factor in whether or not you are hired for a particular position. By choosing the right people to sing your praises, the better the chance you'll all have of celebrating your success when you land that dream job!


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